DENVER – National Pro Fastpitch’s new expansion team, the Chicago Bandits, announced today the signing of three 2004 Olympic players.
Chicago Bandits Principal owner Bill Conroy and lead investor Bill Sokolis have announced that three-time Olympic Gold Medalist Leah O’Brien-Amico and 2004 Team USA Olympic Alternate Jaime Clark will play for the team in the 2005 season, as well as decorated Canadian Olympic pitcher Lauren Bay.
“The addition of these athletes sets the foundation for the caliber of softball we want to play here in Chicago,” stated Conroy, “It is an honor to have some of the best athletes in the world. They are not only incredible ball players, but incredible individuals.”
Conroy went on to say, “It is players like these young women that are key in building a successful franchise that will keep fans coming back again and again.”
The Chicago Bandits are slated to play their inaugural 2005 season at the Sports Complex at Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois.
“We are excited about the addition of depth to our already talented pool of athletes,” said NPF President/CEO Richard Levine, “The growth of professional fastpitch depends on obtaining the best possible athletes, and the addition of Olympic Gold Medalists, O’Brien-Amico and Clark, as well as Olympic players such as Bay are important to the success of our league as well as the sport of softball.”
NPF, the world’s premier professional fastpitch softball league for women, consists of eight teams located throughout the United States and features former Olympic Gold Medalists, USA Softball Women’s National Team members, collegiate All-Americans and all-conference selections. The 2004 season featured the inaugural NPF All-Star Game, the first-ever NPF Championship Semifinal and the first NPF Championship Series.
National Pro Fastpitch is headquartered in Denver, and has been in operation since 1997 under the names Women’s Pro Fastpitch (WPF) and Women’s Pro Softball League (WPSL).